Disc+ On Demand (Amazon.com)Now you don't need a portable DVD player to watch a DVD you've just bought -- all you need is a computer and a high-speed Internet connection. Amazon.com has introduced Disc+ On Demand, a new program that enables purchasers of select DVDs and Blu-ray discs to watch the movie instantly through the company's on demand service. As reported by NewTeeVee, "only a tiny fraction of all DVDs available on Amazon seem to be part of the promotion." Right now, 300 or so titles are available, while the site offers more than 330,000 DVDs for sale. The caveats are notable: the movie can either be streamed or downloaded to a PC or TiVo, but only in standard definition, and the promotion itself is only for a limited time, though NewTeeVee thinks Amazon is "clearly just dipping a toe in the water" in the hope of boosting slumping DVD sales.

As it happens, the announcement comes on the heels of a provocative article by Cory Doctorow in The Guardian UK that declares: "Streaming will never replace downloading." Doctorow specifically addresses the streaming and downloading of music, but the principles surely apply to movies as well: "There's no reason to believe that people will lose the urge to collect music." Storing movies on physical media may well go the way of the dinosaurs, but that "urge to collect" will remain.

Does the platform combo that Amazon.com is testing out have any appeal to you? What other platform combos would you be tempted to buy or use?